1. Do I need a visa to travel to Russia?
First take a look at the map here. If you live in any of the grey countries, you need a visa. However, if you are travelling by boat from Helsinki, you are allowed to stay in St. Petersburg for 72 hours without a visa. This applies to all nationalities, all you need is proof of booked accommodation and a return ticket on St. Peterline.
2. How do I get a tourist visa?
3. How do I get to St. Petersburg?
From Helsinki, you have several alternatives:
The boat – If you want to stay for 3 days without a visa, this is your choice.
The bus – Book in advance and you can get tickets from Helsinki to St.Petersburg for 10 euros. The ride takes about 7,5 hours and you have to get out of the bus at the border, but the bus is very comfortable with free wifi and coffee.
The train – This is the fastest and perhaps most comfortable way to travel. Takes 3,5 hours and you don’t need to get out of the train at the border.
The marshrutka – Do you want to save money and start your adventure already on the way? There are many Russian companies that run minibusses (marshrutkas) between St. Petersburg and Helsinki. The cheapest ones you can hop on in the centre of Helsinki, if you pay a little more they will take you from door to door. There are rarely foreigners travelling on these minibusses and the drivers usually speak only Russian. The ride can take between 7 and 12 hours, depending on where the car stops on the way.
The aeroplane – On the site of the Pulkovo airport is says that “depending on the time of day and the chosen route, it should take you from 30 to 60 minutes to get to the airport from Saint Petersburg city center”. From Helsinki, it doesn’t make much sense to fly to St. Petersburg, as the train is much cheaper and faster when you count the time from you doorstep to the center of St. Petersburg.
4. What counts as “one task” in your pricing?
One task can be for example “finding vegetarian restaurants in St. Petersburg” or “booking tickets to ballet”.
5. Can you be my guide on my trip?
We don’t work as guides, but we can organize one for you.